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And let me in these shades compose Something in verse as true as prose, Removed from all the ambitious scene. Nor puff’d by pride, nor sunk by spleen.'
In short, I'm perfectly content, Let me but live on this side Trent; Nor cross the channel twice a year, To spend six months with statesmen herd.
I must, by all means, come to town,
"Tis for the service of the crown.
“Lewis, the Dean will be of use,
Send for him up, take no excuse."
The toil, the danger of the seas,
Great ministers ne'er think of these;
Or let it cost five hundred pound,
No matter where the money's found.
It is but so much more in debt,
And that they ne'er consider'd yet.
“Good Mr. Dean, go change your gown,
Let my lord know you're come to town."
I hurry me in haste away,
Not thinking it is levee-day;
And find his honour in a pound,
Hemm'd by a triple circle round,
Chequer'd with ribbons blue and gren:
How should I thrust myself between :
Some wag observes me thus perplex'd
And smiling, whispers to the next,
“I thought the Dean had been too proud,
To justle here among a crowd.”
Another, in a surly fit,
Tells me I have more zeal than wit:
“So eager to express your love,
You ne'er consider whom you shove,
But rudely press before a duke.”
I own, I'm pleased with this rebuke,
And take it kindly meant to show
What I desire the world should know.
I get a whisper, and withdraw: When twenty fools I never saw Come with petitions fairly penn'd, Desiring I would stand their friend.
This humbly offers me his caseThat, begs my interest for a place
A hundred other men's affairs,
Like bees, are humming in my ears.
"To-morrow my appeal comes on,
Without your help the cause is gone"-
The duke expects my lord and you,
About some great affair, at two-
"Put my Lord Bolingbroke in mind,
To get my warrant quickly sign’d:
Consider 'tis my first request.'
Be satisfied, I'll do my best:-
Then presently he falls to tease,
“ You may for certain if you please;
I doubt not, if his lordship knew-
And Mr. Dean, one word from you”—
'Tis (let me see) three years and more,
(October next it will be four)
Since HARLEY bid me first attend,
And chose me for an humble friend;
Would take me in his coach to chat,
And question me of this and that;
As, “What's-o-clock ?" And, “How's the wind ?"
66 Whose chariot's that we left behind ?"
Or gravely try to read the lines
Writ underneath the country signs;
Or, "Have you nothing new to-day
From Pope, from Parnell, or from Gay ?"
Such tattle often entertains
My lord and me as far as Staines,
As once a week we travel down
To Windsor, and again to town;
Where all that passes, inter nos,
Might be proclaim'd at Charing-cross.
Yet some, I know, with envy swell,
Because they see me used so well:
“How think you of our friend the Dean?
I wonder what some people mean;
My lord and he are grown so great,
Always together, tête-à-tête.
What, they admire him for his jokes-
See but the fortune of some folks!"
There flies about a strange report
Of some express arrived at court;
I'm stopp'd by all the fools I meet,
And catechised in every street.
“You, Mr. Dean, frequent the great; 'Inform us, will the emperor treat? Or do the prints and papers lie ?" “Faith, sir, you know as much as I.”
Ah, Doctor, how you love to jest !
'Tis now no secret”—I protest
'Tis one to me--" Then tell us, pray,
are the troops to have their pay qua
And though I solemnly declare
I know no more than my Lord Mayor,
They stand amazėd, and think me grown
The closest mortal ever known.
Thus in a sea of folly toss'd,
My choicest hours of life are lost;
Yet always wishing to retreat,
Oh, could I see my country seat!
There leaning near a gentle brook,
Sleep, or peruse some ancient book,
And there in sweet oblivion drown
Those cares that haunt the court and town.
O charming noons! and nights divine !
Or when I sup, or when I dine,
My friends above, my folks below,
Chatting and laughing, all-a-row,
The beans and bacon set before 'em,
The grace-cup served with all decorum:
Each willing to be pleased, and please,
And even the very dogs at ease!
Here no man prates of idle things;
How this or that Italian sings,
A neighbour's madness, or his spouse's,
Or what's in either of the houses :
But something much more our concern,
And quite a scandal not to learn:
Which is the happier, or the wiser,
A man of merit, or a miser ?
Whether we ought to choose our friends,
For their own worth, or our own ends ?
What good, or better, we may call,
And what, the very best of all ?
Our friend Dan Prior told, (you know.)
A tale extremely d propos:
Name a town life, and in a trice,
He had a story of two mice.
Once on a time (so runs the fable)
A country mouse, right hospitable,
Received a town mouse at his board,
Just as a farmer might a lord.
A frugal mouse upon the whole,
Yet loved his friend, and had a soul;
Knew what was handsome, and would do't,
On just occasion, coûte qui coûte.
He brought him bacon, nothing lean)
Pudding, that might have pleased a dean;
Cheese, such as men in Suffolk make,
But wish'd it Stilton for his sake;
Yet, to his guest though no way sparing,
He eat himself the rind and paring.
Our courtier scarce could touch a bit,
But show'd his breeding and his wit;
He did his best to seem to eat,
And cried, “I vow you're mighty neat.
But Lord, my friend, this savage scene !
For God's sake, come, and live with men:
Consider, mice, like men, must die,
Both small and great, both you and I:
Then spend your life in joy and sport.
(This doctrine, friend, I learn'd at court.)”
The veriest hermit in the nation
May yield, God knows, to strong temptation.
Away they come, through thick and thin,
To a tall house near Lincoln's Inn;
('Twas on the night of a debate,
When all their lordships had sat late.)
Behold the place, where if a poet
Shined in description, he might show it;
Tell how the moon-beam trembling falls,
And tips with silver all the walls;
Palladian walls, Venetian doors,
Grotesco roofs, and stucco floors;
But let it, in a word, be said,
The moon was up, and men a-bed,
The napkins white, the carpet red;
The guests withdrawn had left the treaty
And down the mice sat, tête-à-tête.
Our courtier walks from dish to dish,
Tastes for his friend of fowl and fish:
Tells all their names, lays down the law,
Que ça est bon! Ah goûtez ça !
That jelly's rich, this malmsey healing,
Pray, dip your whiskers and your tail in."
Was ever such a happy swain ?
He stuffs and swills, and stuffs again.
“I'm quite ashamed—'tis mighty rude
To eat so much--but all's so good.
I have a thousand thanks to give
My lord alone knows how to live."
No sooner said, but from the hall
Rush chaplain; butler, dogs, and all:
“A rat! a rat! clap to the door”.
The cat comes bouncing on the floor.
O for the heart of Homer's mịce,
Or gods to save them in a trice!
(It was by Providence they think,
For your damn'd stucco has no chink.)
“An't please your honour," quoth the peasant:
“ This same dessert is not so pleasant:
Give me again my hollow tree;
A crust of bread, and liberty !"
AGAIN! new tumults in my breast?
Ah spare mę, Venus ! let me, let me rest!
I am not now, alas! the man
As in the gentle reign of my queen Anne.
Ah sound no more thy soft alarms,
Nor circle sober fifty with thy charms.
Mother too fierce of dear desires !
Turn, turn to willing hearts your wanton fires.
To number five direct your doves,
There spread round MURRAY all your blooming loves
Noble and young, who strikes the heart
With every sprightly, every decent part;
Equal, the injured to defend,
To charm the mistress, or to fix the friend.
He with a hundred arts refined,
Shall stretch thy conquests over half the kind: